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West Fork Cantwell Glacier photo pair
Photo Credits: Stephen R. Capps (1928), Sam Hooper (2011)
Ecoregion: South Central Mountains
Change Type: Glacial thinning and retreat
Glacial thinning and retreatAnimation is available
The icefall and glacier tongue you get a peek at here in the upper West Fork Cantwell River watershed flows off a tiny icecap (in the clouds) that straddles the crest of the Alaska Range. The icecap also has a tongue that empties into the upper Teklanika Watershed on the other side (north) of the range. As with other small glaciers in Denali this one has continued to thin and retreat in the last 100 years. The gravel floodplain in the foreground appears to have less vegetation in 2011. Braided river channels are constantly changing and the vegetation apparent in 1928 could have been eroded away or buried by sediment during a flood. For another view of this same glacier, type “west+fork+cantwell” into the search box.